30 Weeks & Fetal Movement

Finally, I am back on track! Sure I may have published one too many posts today but I really wanted to play catch up since I am getting ready to finish his nursery, continue taking pregnancy related classes and a bunch of other things. Ugh so many changes and so many emotions. First the official 30 week update then additional stuff.

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Mood: Good

Energy: Low (tired)

Appetite: High

Baby Movement: Yes but sporadic

Contractions: NA

This has been a week of insane growth! I didn’t realize how big my stomach has gotten until I saw the reactions of people who hadn’t seen me in a few weeks. I knew it must be getting bigger because turning over in bed has become a full on cardio workout 🙂 Speaking of bed, sleep is the most elusive creature of all times. I feel as though I am more likely to see a unicorn dancing with a leprechaun on the yellow brick road than I am to have a good night’s sleep.  I have now given up and decided the recliner will be my new sleeping partner until further notice. But for whatever reason I decided to give my bed one more try – FAIL. I will be back in the recliner tonight…

Now onto heavier more serious stuff – Fetal Movement. In a previous post I mentioned receiving the kick counter. In case you aren’t familiar with a kick counter it is a piece of sturdy paper on which to record your baby’s movements (see below).

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It’s very straight forward; see how long it takes you to count 10 movements. Pretty much every movement counts except for hiccups. As you can see, part of me wasn’t paying attention because I didn’t realize this was supposed to be daily. Thankfully it only took me until Thursday to figure that out. I was off to a great start. He normally moves at night starting right after dinner so timing him was easy at first. I forgot the following Thursday because I was so tired I just passed out as soon as I sat down in the recliner. I figured the next few days would be slightly off as I was sick again and it was draining any energy I had. Then we (baby and I) hit the 30 week mark…

Week 30 was a different story. I was (am) still trying to get over a cold and knew I’d have to pay special attention to his kick counter so I didn’t mess anything up or miss anything like I did the previous weeks. At first I figured the counter was off due to my error. Like I said I was tired from being sick, my body and mind were (are) still adjusting to being at home and balance isn’t my best quality so I brushed it off as being my fault. As the days continued, I began to realize that something was off. Counting became increasing difficult and stressful. Saturday was my breaking point.

I spent almost all day obsessing over his movements or lack thereof. I started doubting myself around 2pm when I still hadn’t felt any significant movement. I began texting friends who’d recently given birth and who could help me understand what could be going on. I then did the unthinkable… Yes, I turned back to Dr. Google. Well as expected nothing was easing my mind and Dr. Google just made it worse. I saw things ranging from everything is fine because baby sleeps like an infant on the outside to your baby is dying seek help immediately. Needless to say everything I read pre-pregnancy had gone out the window and I went into complete mental freak out. I am super responsible and practical even when terrified; so being in between insurance due to leaving work I wanted to make sure I was covered before I flew to the ER or Labor & Delivery or whoever helps super paranoid first-time moms. I was okay but again logic was trying to push through so I did everything I could think of in order to get him to move. Sugar (ice cream), caffeine (mocha), exercise (walking), ice cold water then hubby tried to get him to move but nothing worked.

Phone call verifying on coverage – Check. Reassurance/ advice from friends – Check. Harassing hubby for his opinion – Check. Consulting kick counter – Check. Calming my fears – Epic Fail. As my panic mounted these are the things that ran through my head:

  • Everything is fine. He’s just tired from all the weight he’s putting on in preparation for birth.
  • Your baby is dying and you’re worried about how much peace of mind will cost you
  • If he dies, it is your fault
  • Why don’t you sit down and think about all of the things you’ve already read on this?!
  • What good is the internet if no one will agree and make you feel better??
  • Hubby is right. Baby is fine and you’re just overreacting. Thanks hormones
  • Something is wrong call the experts!
  • PANIC

When I burst out in tears while trying to explain myself to my hubby is when I knew I just needed to call. Fortunately I had just enough logic left to look on the kick counter card for the right number to call. Right there it said call this number if. I called and explained everything to the wonder L&D nurse who said “We’re not going to play a guessing game. Come in right away. Everything is most likely fine but I’d rather check your baby out just to be sure.” I calmly thank her and tell hubby we have to drive across town so I can get checked out at the hospital we’ll be delivering at. He still insists everything is fine but knows better than to argue with me when I’ve made up my mind. So through tears, an elevated heart rate and a potential looming asthma attack we head to the hospital.

As we’re driving you could hear a pin drop. Finally hubby reassures me and we start talking. I make a joke about how we should time it so we know how long it’ll take us to get to the hospital and he reminds me that at almost 11pm we’re not going to get an accurate time since there is no traffic. I didn’t care and timed it anyways plus I needed a distraction from my horrible “your baby is dead” thoughts. I must admit that I stumbled upon a stillbirth vlog and it really threw me off so I might have been way more fearful than necessary. Anyways we finally arrived at the hospital, got checked in, gave urine sample and was quickly hooked up for monitoring. It felt like an eternity before my husband was allowed in the room (yes, even on these trips they make companions wait outside until the questions are asked). I was relieved at hearing his heartbeat even though I’d already heard it at home on my Doppler. I again started to panic (thanks Dr. Google) because what I read said a heartbeat doesn’t equal a healthy baby. Right at that moment an RN came in the room chatted with us, let us know what was going to happen then disappeared because someone was having a real emergency. After the real emergency was handled she came back checked a few more things then let us know the doctor would be in to do the final check which was an ultrasound. Before leaving she let me know that with such a big difference they would have told me to come in even if I only called the advice line. She said they have to answer to a lot of people including their own conscience so they would have told me to come in just in case. She also let us know that she had a very quiet baby (2nd pregnancy) and would randomly go hook herself up to monitor her daughter. That really made me feel better. Here she is a trained professional and she still worried when her baby didn’t move that much. When the doctor finally came in she had the ultrasound machine with her. She reassured us these were just precautions and that so far nothing has indicated a problem. She did the ultrasound and everything was great. She let us know some common causes of slowed fetal movement but she also followed it up by saying trust your instincts. If you feel something is wrong call us no matter how silly/ crazy you might feel because normally everything is fine but sometimes it isn’t and I’d hate for you to ignore your feelings and have a bad outcome.

After all of the reassurance and kind words we were on our way. I felt better, baby was okay and hubby didn’t have to listen to my paranoid fears all night. I was also able to ask how they felt about nurse gifts for the delivery team as well as how many people attend a healthy delivery. In my case everything was fine and our baby is healthy. However if you find yourself in the same situation GET HELP.

My advice:

  • When in doubt seek immediate help
    • Doctors have years of schooling and experience. Let them help
  • Know your baby’s moving habits
    • 10 movements in 2hrs might not be your baby’s version of normal
  • Never feel crazy when it comes to the health of your child
    • Better safe than sorry
  • You are not a doctor therefore you can’t be sure so don’t try to do their job! Ask a professional

Again in my case everything was fine but please seek help if you are concerned 🙂

 

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